New undergraduate course leverages signals to make decisions

Ever wondered how a medical doctor leverages the information gathered in an MRI to determine how to complete a surgical procedure? Or, maybe you’re curious as to how oil prospectors use radars to determine where to drill next.

Beethoven’s 5th Symphony introduction in wave form.

A new course titled CSCI 4810/CSCI 3900C – Multimedia Signal Processing/Selected Topics in Computer Science will deal with these very issues.

Multimedia signal processing is distinguished from other areas of computer science by the unique types of data it uses: signals. In most cases, these signals originate as sensory data from the real world – things like seismic vibrations, sound waves, visual images, etc.* They include everything from video and animation to speech and photography.

Multimedia signal processing is the techniques used to manipulate these signals after they have been converted into a digital form. It may include a wide variety of goals: enhancement of visual images, recognition and generation of speech, compression of data for storage and transmission, etc.

Signal processing is one of the most powerful technologies that will shape science and engineering in the 21st century. Revolutionary changes have already been made in a broad range of fields – communications, medical imaging, radar, sonar, high fidelity music reproduction, and oil prospecting just to name a few.

In addition, signal processing has become an interdisciplinary area of study. Common career paths in the fields of software, cybersecurity, telecommunications, medical, aerospace, military and finance are now available with GlassDoor reporting the average salary in these fields at over $100,000 annually.

A sample image enhancement project from the new course in Multimedia Signal Processing.

In this new course, CSCI 4810 – Multimedia Signal Processing, developed by Dr. Yong Wei, professor of computer science, students will develop an understanding of discrete multimedia signals and digital signal processing theories, and, obtain hands-on experience in implementing fundamental digital signal processing algorithms.

Students will work on projects involving sound, speech, images, videos and animations.

Students will need to have completed CSCI 1301 or CSCI 1371 to be eligible for the class.

*References from The Scientist and Engineer’s Guide to Digital Signal Processing by S.W. Smith